Faith and Love!

1 Corinthians 13:2
And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.

A favorite theory of salvation tends to put so much emphasis on our faith that it forgets faith is the beginning, not the end, of the Christian life.  As one wag has re-cast St. Paul’s words, some people seem to think that the apostle said, “Now abide these three: faith, hope, and love.  But the greatest of these is faith.”  In reality, however, the greatest of these is love, not faith.  As Peter Kreeft says, faith is the root, hope the stem, and love the flower.  All are interdependent.  But the goal of the Christian life is not the root, but the flower.  As St. Paul says, “The aim of our charge is love that issues from a pure heart and a good conscience and sincere faith” (1 Timothy 1:5).  So don’t settle for anything less than the full-meal deal.  Faith alone is not the Christian life unless by “faith alone” we mean a faith in God the Father, given through Jesus the Son, by the power of the Holy Spirit that issues in faith expressing itself in deeds of love.  Today, put legs of love on your faith.

Mark Shea


Mark P. Shea is a popular Catholic writer and speaker. The author of numerous books, his most recent work is The Work of Mercy (Servant) and The Heart of Catholic Prayer (Our Sunday Visitor). Mark contributes numerous articles to many magazines, including his popular column “Connecting the Dots” for the National Catholic Register. Mark is known nationally for his one minute “Words of Encouragement” on Catholic radio. He also maintains the Catholic and Enjoying It blog and regularly blogs for National Catholic Register. He lives in Washington state with his wife, Janet, and their four sons.

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